Oregon State Bar Bulletin — OCTOBER 2013

Bar People

Among Ourselves

John C. Pinkstaff, counsel to the firm at Lane Powell, was recently elected president of the board for Child Advocates Inc., Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) for Clackamas County. Pinkstaff has been actively involved with CASA, serving on the board of directors for the past five years. The association supports and promotes court-appointed advocates for abused or neglected children nationwide.

Kelly Knivila, partner at Stoel Rives, has been elected to the board of trustees for the Randall Children’s Hospital Foundation, which advocates and raises funds for the Randall Children’s Hospital at Legacy Emanuel in Portland. Knivila focuses her practice on representing hospitals, physician groups, managed care organizations, practice management companies, behavioral health providers, federally qualified health centers and a variety of other providers on both contested and advisory matters.

At its annual convention in August, the Oregon Trial Lawyers Association presented Ben Cox of Eugene with its first Outstanding Young Lawyer Award. The award is given to a lawyer in practice for five years or less who demonstrates professional excellence in trial practice, service to OTLA and the community and the advancement of legal ethics and professionalism.

Carolyn Walker of Stoel Rives has been recognized as a leading litigator in Benchmark Litigation magazine’s Top 250 Women in Litigation list. She is one of only three Oregon litigators to be included. Walker has extensive experience litigating and counseling clients on a wide variety of employment matters and has represented clients in jury trials, in arbitrations and mediations, and before administrative agencies, including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries.

Patrick John Sweeney of Portland recently won the U.S. Croquet Association 2013 Oregon state championship.

Three Miller Nash attorneys have been selected to serve on the boards of several Portland-area organizations. James Walker was elected to the Albertina Kerr Center board of directors. Walker is a member of the firm’s business group and focuses his practice on commercial financing, real estate transactions and construction law. During law school, Walker was a graduate student instructor for the University of Michigan and a member of the Black Law Student Alliance and Future Advocates in Training. Jovita Wang was elected to the Oregon Asian Pacific American Bar Association board of directors and was appointed to the Multnomah Bar Association Young Lawyers Section board of directors. Wang focuses her practice on business, commercial and employment litigation. Before law school, she was an AmeriCorps member at Joseph Gale Elementary in Forest Grove and volunteered as a court-appointed special advocate in Washington County. And St. Andrew Nativity School has named Tyler Andersonto its board of trustees. An attorney in the firm’s business group, Anderson counsels clients on a wide range of business matters, including regulatory compliance, corporate governance and purchase and sale transactions. Anderson also has extensive experience in the areas of sports, food and beverage and hospitality law.

Metropolitan Family Service has appointed Eva Kripalani as the organization’s new chair of the board of directors. Also, Steven Wilker has been appointed the new vice chair. Kripalani is the owner of Eva Kripalani Legal and Consulting Services in Portland. She provides guidance to corporations in areas such as law department management, corporate governance, business transactions, ethics and compliance and business process domains such as contract management. She was formerly executive vice president and general counsel of Knowledge Learning Corporation (now Knowledge Universe-US), where she worked until 2007. She also serves on the board of trustees for Willamette University and the Library Foundation. In 2012, she completed eight years’ service on the board of the Oregon Public Employees Retirement System, where she chaired the audit committee. Wilker is a partner in Tonkon Torp, where he has practiced since 1992. He counsels clients in complex commercial litigation, intellectual property, media communications, real estate and finance issues. Wilker has served on MFS board since June 2010 and its executive committee since June 2011. He is also serves on boards of ACLU of Oregon and ACLU Foundation of Oregon, and chairs the ACLU Foundation of Oregon’s Lawyers Committee.

Christiane Fife, senior counsel in the Portland office of Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt, was recently appointed to serve on the associate board of Start Making A Reader Today. Fife focuses her practice on product liability litigation and represents businesses involved in automotive, pharmaceutical, and medical device cases in federal, state and multidistrict proceedings.

Miller Nash attorney Jeanne Sinnott has been chosen to lead the Multnomah Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Section board in 2014. Sinnott has been on the YLS board since 2011 and has served on several YLS committees. She will also serve on the Multnomah Bar Association board of directors.

Loren S. Scott of the Scott Law Group has been certified by the American Board of Certification in business bankruptcy law, joining a group of only 10 other practitioners in Oregon to be certified in this field. For more information on ABC certification, see www.abcworld.org.

John Powers was recently awarded membership in the National Trial Lawyers Association’s Top 100 Trial Lawyers after maintaining the highest peer review rating for more than 30 years.


After 41 years of practicing law, Chris Mullmann, assistant general counsel and manager of the OSB Client Assistance Office, has decided to sail off into the sunset of retirement. In 1972, Mullmann graduated from Hastings College of Law, passed the Oregon bar exam and joined Dunn Carney as a civil litigator. He joined Rankin, Ragen & Roberts in 1974. He later became a partner at Ragen & Roberts, which eventually merged into Davis, Wright & Tremaine. He joined the Oregon State Bar staff in 1994 as assistant disciplinary counsel. After 10 years of litigating disciplinary cases, Mullmann joined the general counsel’s office and became the founding manager of the Client Assistance Office. He also taught ethics at Lewis & Clark Law School from 1996 to 2011. He intends to pursue his passions of family, photography and travel — and to keep cheering on his University of Oregon Ducks (class of 1969).

Washington Federal has named Megan Roché vice president and special assets officer. Roché previously served as a special assets officer with Columbia Bank (formerly West Coast Bank). Roché also has previous experience practicing law, with an emphasis on real estate and banking-industry related issues. She also served on the OSB Land Use Legislative Committee and the Multnomah Bar Association’s Group Insurance Committee. She co-authored the chapter “Land Use Updates” in the OSB 2009 Legislative Highlights.

Lauren A. King has joined Leahy, Van Vactor, Cox & Melendy as a new associate. King will focus her practice on local government, land use and real estate. Prior to joining the firm, she worked as a Hatfield fellow for the city of Portland.

Janice Hazel has joined Mersenne Law as the firm expands its intellectual property rights and small business practice to include taxation, estate planning and probate. Hazel will serve as of counsel and will retain her long standing trust, probate and small business mediation practice. Hazel is co-founder and CEO of Cloudfeet Inc., an Internet service providing lawyers and clients with private accounts for exchanging encrypted documents and conversations.

Water law attorney Peter D. Mohrhas joined Jordan Ramis as a shareholder. Mohr’s well-established water law practice includes providing expertise in state and federal law, and counseling public and private clients on water law issues involving regulatory and transactional matters. Mohr also advises clients in matters involving environmental regulatory compliance, energy facility permitting and access and right-of-way issues.

Mark Hageman has joined Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt as an associate in the firm’s intellectual property group in the Portland office. Hageman focuses his practice in the area of patent litigation. He has seven years of patent experience, including working as an examiner at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and on litigation matters including patent prosecution, re-examination and other patent-related matters while at Dickstein Shapiro in Washington, D.C.

Stahancyk, Kent & Hook welcomes Laura Franzenas an associate attorney. Franzen received her J.D. from Willamette University College of Law, where she served as the operations manager of the moot court executive board and a writer for the Willamette Law Online. During her education at Willamette, she won the Section 4 First Year Appellate Competition and received honors in intensive trial practice.

Established family law attorney Samantha Hazel has joined Stahancyk, Kent & Hook. Hazel received her J.D. from University of Oregon School of Law and an MBA from the University of Utah. She has practiced in many counties throughout the state of Oregon, handling litigation, mediation and creative settlement solutions. Hazel has previously worked at Glazer & Associates and Soriano & Associates.

Littler Mendelson has appointed Douglas S. Parker as office managing shareholder at the firm’s Portland office. For more than 30 years, Parker has represented employers throughout the Pacific Northwest and in Alaska in a broad range of employment litigation assignments, including class actions, wrongful discharge, wage and hour, employment discrimination, retaliation, health care and other ERISA claims, contract interference, non-competition and intellectual property matters. He also routinely handles traditional labor matters, including collective bargaining, unfair labor practices and labor arbitrations.

Thomas A. Hackett has joined Sussman Shank in the firm’s business, tax and estate planning practice groups. As a business lawyer, Thomas represents families and business owners. His experience includes representing buyers and sellers in the sales of businesses and advising individuals and families on taxable and non-taxable estates in Oregon and Washington. His experience also includes tax efficiency planning, estate planning, planning for people with special needs, choice of entity selection, corporate maintenance and succession planning for family-held businesses.

Markowitz, Herbold, Glade & Mehlhaf announces that Steffan Alexander, Kristin Asai, Lauren Blaesing and Harry Wilson have joined the firm as associates. Alexander was previously a criminal prosecutor for the state attorney’s office for the 8th Judicial District in Florida and served as in-house counsel for Infinite Energy Inc., a multistate energy company. Alexander is a graduate of the University of Florida, Levin College of Law. Asai joined the firm following a judicial clerkship of two and a half years with the Hon. Ancer L. Haggerty, U.S. District Court of Oregon. Prior to her clerkship, Asai was a summer associate at a Portland law firm. She graduated from Lewis & Clark Law School. Blaesing joins the firm following a two-year judicial clerkship with the Hon. David Schuman of the Oregon Court of Appeals. Blaesing previously was a summer associate with a Portland law firm, where she worked on insurance coverage, products liability and commercial litigation matters. She was also as a judicial extern for the Hon. Roger Burdick of the Idaho Supreme Court. Blaesing is a graduate of the University of Oregon School of Law. Wilson has experience across Oregon’s judicial system, in both state and federal trial and appellate courts. He worked as an assistant attorney general at the Oregon Department of Justice and most recently served a two-year clerkship with the Hon. Michael H. Simon, U.S. District Court of Oregon. He graduated from Lewis & Clark Law School.

Littler Mendelson has elevated Jennifer A. Nelson to shareholder in the firm’s growing Portland office. Nelson represents both public and private employers in all aspects of employment law. Her practice focuses on representing clients on claims involving discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination, and wage and hour issues. A frequent speaker, Nelson has presented at several employment law seminars and also provides management, human resources and employee training.

Cathryn Ruckle has joined the Law Offices of Nay & Friedenberg. Since 2005, she has focused on probate litigation, guardianships/conservatorships and trust administration. Her practice will continue to focus on these areas, along with estate planning. Ruckle is a volunteer with the Senior Law Project and a member of the Multnomah Bar Association Committee on Professionalism. She is licensed to practice in both Oregon and Washington. Reach her at (503) 245-0894 or by email at cathryn@naylaw.com.

Larry Blunck has returned to the practice of law at Blunck & Walhood after spending three years doing missionary work in Peru for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. While in Peru, Blunck served as mission president and supervised more than 600 missionaries. He made over 300 flights to and from the jungle cities of Peru as part of his missionary work. He has now expanded his civil litigation practice to include mediation and arbitration services, including services for Spanish speaking parties, as he is fluent in Spanish.

Holland & Knight’s Portland office is expanding with the addition of two associates, Brent Berselli will be an associate in the firm’s personal wealth services practice. His J.D. is from the University of Washington School of Law. He also holds an LL.M. in Taxation and served as a student attorney with the University of Washington Federal Income Taxation Clinic. Michael Tabata is joining the affordable housing transactions group. Tabata received his J.D. from Lewis & Clark Law School in Portland and his undergraduate degree from the University of San Diego. He also attended the Institute of American Universities in Aix-en-Provence, France.

The law firm of Underwood Medina has relocated its office to 330 N.E. Lincoln St, Suite 200, Hillsboro, OR 97124. The firm’s owners, James Underwood and Eddie Medina, will continue to represent consumer and business clients in all matters, from litigation to transactional practice, including assisting those clients with unique legal needs related to wineries, vineyards and breweries. Reach them at (503) 336-4007.

In Memoriam

Rodger M. Hepburn, shareholder and member of the executive committee of Reinisch Mackenzie in Portland, died July 14, 2013. He was 49.

Born in Seattle on Jan. 7, 1964, Hepburn received a bachelor’s degree from Western Washington University (1987) and a J.D. from Willamette University College of Law (1992). He was a member of the Oregon and Washington bar associations and a member of the OSB Workers’ Compensation Section executive committee since 1993, serving as section treasurer (1999-2001), secretary (2002), chair-elect (2003) and chair (2004).

Athletic and lean, he enjoyed running, playing basketball and bicycling. He particularly savored spending time with his children. Calm and respectful, he was known for his wry sense of humor filled with impish sarcasm.

He is survived by his wife, Casey, their children and his mother.





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